Sunday 19 April 2009

UKIP: Stuart Wheeler's speech at the UKIP Spring Rally

Here is the text of Stuart Wheeler's (the spread betting millionaire thrown out of the Conservative Party for donating to UKIP) speech to the UKIP Spring Rally. Today in the Great Hall at Exeter University. Photos are available from PA. Mr. Wheeler was given a standing ovation as he came on to speak and again as he finished.

I suspect there are many here today just like me – Conservative at heart but feeling let down over Europe. I know I am not alone in this awkward position; when I decided to donate money to UKIP, many people got in touch and expressed their support for my actions – and almost all of them were die hard Tories.

And what was the straw that broke the camel's back – that turned us from our natural party? Two words: Ken and Clarke. But it is two words of another Tory politician that I want to examine this morning: William and Hague.

Last Saturday, the Daily Telegraph carried an interview with William Hague.Nothing, nothing could have illustrated better why I shall vote UKIP in the Euro-elections. There was in his interview no commitment to anything.

Let's look at it. If there is a referendum on the Lisbon Treaty will Ken Clarke vote against it? William Hague says that he expects, expects, mark you, that he will. What kind of language is that? Why doesn't William Hague know how Clarke will vote? Did he and David Cameron not ask him that simple question before they appointed him to the shadow cabinet?

Ken Clarke himself was quite specific on the subject as a backbencher “Calls for a referendum were absurd”. Take another point. The Conservatives should make it absolutely clear that, if elected, they will immediately call a referendum on Lisbon. But what do we find?

William Hague indicates that the Conservatives are likely to attempt to scrap the Treaty – possibly by calling a retrospective referendum. Heavens above! The Pope has indicated that he is likely to possibly be a Catholic!

The Tories want to sound tough without making the slightest commitment. The leadership is terrified that a tough stance will split the party. But who will be on the Europhile side of the split?

Just two big beasts, Clarke and Heseltine, and one or two smaller beasts. The party has shown quite rightly that it is not afraid of big donors, by expelling me. It should not be afraid of big beasts either.

By the way it is only the leadership that is so timid. A back bencher Tory MP came up to me and begged me to go on doing what I was doing. “80% of our MPs are behind you”, he said.

The polls are perfectly clear about the voters as well. They were recently asked by the pollsters, YouGov, which of ten things they would most like to see done. Top – reduce immigration: second – reduce the powers of the EU and increase the powers of Britain's Parliament. Way down below – reduce taxes, deal with climate change, scrap id cards etc...

Just listen to the voters, David and William, they do care about Europe, a lot. People have asked me, since my donation, why I did not stay within the Conservative party and use, as they put it, my influence. At one time I did have some sort of influence. I might almost say I was subject to a charm offensive Would I like to have lunch with shadow minister X?

Would I pop in for a discussion with shadow minister Y? Would I like to see William Hague to discuss Europe? The reason of course was to make me unlikely to say something awkward for the Conservatives or, god forbid, to support UKIP. I cannot resist one final point about William Hague's interview. He asks for a protest vote in the Euro elections. Well, which party would a protest vote be for?

Obviously not the party easily leading in the polls, the Tories – that could not be a protest vote. It can only mean voting UKIP! I look forward to him joining me in expulsion from the Party!

Thank You !


wonkotsane said...

Brilliant, wish I'd been there to hear it.

Anonymous said...

I was good to see and hear Stuart speak Stu.

Deirdre said...

Hi, I attended the UKIP rally in Exeter and thought it was brilliant. Stuart Wheeler was good and we are grateful to him for supporting UKIP, but the icing on the cake for me, was Marta Andreasen. A very brave lady, and so inspiring. I hope she does well in the June 4th elections, she really deserves to succeed.

ukipwebmaster said...

Now on YouTube:
Other will follow.

Anonymous said...

This brilliant speech should've been on all the news channels. but we don't have an honest media, sadly. They'd sooner talk about a girly spat between spin doctors of the 2 lame and useless parties.